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Top 20 Artificial Intelligence Books & Whitepapers

Artificial intelligence is literally taking over how products are made, how some jobs are done, and how some lives are lived. It’s important that we know how it’s come this far, why it is where it is, and where it is going from this point. There are people on both sides of the fence about whether artificial intelligence on a massive scale is good or bad for humanity, and there are still others who are on the fence waiting to see how this all plays out. If you want to know more about AI and AI research it is suggested that you look for some artificial intelligence books to read so that you can learn more about the subject. It’s hard to make an educated decision about anything until you’ve learned enough about it.

Once you’ve exhausted the books on this list of our top 20 artificial intelligence books and whitepapers, you can move on the artificial whitepapers to read, most of which have been published more recently but don’t go into the topic as in-depth as the books. So, without further ado, here are these recommended titles that you need to consider reading:

Top 20 Books and Whitepapers on Artificial Intelligence

Whether you have spent a couple of years being an Artificial Intelligence insider, or you would like to be one, the following AI books and whitepapers will keep you up to date with what is trending in the industry. 

Artificial Intelligence Books:


Artificial Intelligence: A Modern Approach by Russell and Norvig

This textbook is one of the most comprehensive books on Artificial Intelligence available and is a perfect choice for students that are studying either one semester or a two-semester course on the subject at either undergraduate or postgraduate level. The third edition, which now includes Dr. Norvig as co-author is the most up-to-date with information on both the theory and practice of AI.

Stuart Russell obtained his BA in Physics with high honors from Oxford University at the age of 20, and his Ph.D. in computer science from Stanford Universtiy a mere 4 years later. He is currently faculty at the University of California at Berkeley.

Peter Norvig works for Google as Director of Research. He is an American Association for Artificial Intelligence Fellow as well as a Fellow of the Association for Computing Machinery.


Machine Learning by Tom M. Mitchell

When looking for artificial intelligence books, you should start your research here. This book, published in 1997, has been referenced time and time again when it comes to understanding computer algorithms that allow machines to get better over time, on their own. There are many learning styles, as well as learning theories, covered in this book. It is written so that you don’t need to have prior knowledge of AI to pick up the book and start learning. 

Tom M. Mitchell is a professor in the Machine Learning Department in the School of Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon University.

How to Create a Mind: The Secret of Human Thought Revealed by Ray Kurzweil

In this book, the highly creative Kurzweil describes how to engineer a computer brain as complex as a human brain by first figuring out how the human mind works. He intends to use advancements in neuroscience, his own research, and the most up-to-date AI research to reverse-engineer the human brain using technology. Artificial Intelligence is going to change life in major ways.

Ray Kurzweil has won multiple prizes for his theories and inventions, nine honorary doctorates, and several honors from American presidents.


The Singularity is Near by Ray Kurzweil

In the Singularity is Near, Ray Kurzweil describes what he means by “The Singularity.” That singularity is the combining, slowly and over time, of human intelligence with that of artificial intelligence. This will eventually take the already complex human mind and advance it to the point of computer intelligence, which could become vastly superior in many ways.

While Kurzweil doesn’t deny that there will be consequences of this happening, he leans towards an optimistic view of what this new future of combined human and artificial intelligence will look like.


The Emotion Machine: Commonsense Thinking, Artificial Intelligence, and the Future of the Human Mind by Marvin Minsky

Instead of thinking as thoughts, intuitions, feelings, and emotions as separate from each other, Minsky believes – and describes in his book – that all of these things are simply different thought processes and if we learn how to harness this, we could teach machines to think like humans, and therefore also have intuitions, feelings, and emotions.

Marvin Minsky is a cognitive scientist, and was a co-founder of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s AI Lab. He was mostly involved with research of AI theories and practices.


The Economic Singularity: Artificial Intelligence and the Death of Capitalism by Calum Chace

In this book, Chace argues that “Economic Singularity” is coming within a few decades and that most people will not be able to work for money because AI will be doing all or most of the work. Depending on how we plan, he says, this could be potentially good – or it could be devastating to the world economy. Hence; we need a new one. Robots are becoming more and more of a norm in many places and soon they will be in every workplace taking over mundane tasks. It’s not long before AI starts doing tasks that we’ve always thought would require a human mind or touch to perform.

Calum Chace is a full-time writer, prior to becoming an author he had a career in journalism and also in a business where he worked as everything from a marketer to CEO.


Superintelligence: Paths, Dangers, Strategies by Nick Bostrom

Bostom uses a great analogy to compare what may happen one day if the general intelligence of machines was to become greater than that of humans. At the time of writing, the fate of gorillas and all other species on Planet Earth are in the hands of humans with their superior brainpower and lack of care about the environment than it is in the hands of the actual species. How would AI with superior intelligence look at humans? Would they treat us favourably or look down on us? Would they wipe out human (the minority) existence to save non-human (the majority) life?

Nick Bostrom is professor and faculty at Oxford University.


The Philosophy of Artificial Intelligence by Margaret A. Boden

This collection of readings looks at the issues – philosophically – facing artificial intelligence. There are both classic and contemporary readings from a wide range of experts and thought-leaders on AI. The question at hand is whether or not a computer, or many computers, could be made to mimic the human mind.

Margaret A Boden has edited this Cambridge handbook and includes both a comprehensive reading list and an informative introduction to bring readers into the subject.


The Emperor’s New Mind: Concerning Computers, Minds, and the Laws of Physics by Roger Penrose and Martin Gardner

Unlike most artificial intelligence books, this one has been thoroughly researched to show that an artificially intelligent machine will never be capable of doing what a human mind can. Sir Roger Penrose claims this through sharing his research in physics, mathematics, cosmology, and philosophy. Whether you currently hold a belief that artificial intelligence can match that of a human or not, this book is a must read.

Sir Roger Penrose is the Emeritus Rouse Ball professor of Mathematics at Oxford University as well as an Emeritus Fellow of Wadham College.


Artificial Intelligence Simplified: Understanding Basic Concepts by Dr. Binto George and Gail Carmichael

This book simplifies the core of what artificial intelligence is and what you need to know to start learning about it. This is something that could be read before diving into a more advanced textbook, or pre-reading before taking an actual college course on AI. All of the basic concepts are covered, from genetic algorithms and game trees to natural language processing and super intelligence.

Dr. Binto George is a professor in the School of Computer Sciences at Western Illinois University. He previously worked at Rutgers after obtaining his Ph.D. from Indian Institute of Science.

Gail Carmichael is first and foremost a computer scientist. She is also an educator and blogger.

Artificial Intelligence Whitepapers (Including PDF Downloads):

Preparing for the Future of Artificial Intelligence by The White House (US Government)

This whitepaper was published in October 2016. It looks at where artificial intelligence stands in today’s society and what roles it plays in the economy. It also asks questions of what can be expected in the near and far future from advancements in AI research. This is definitely an artificial intelligence whitepaper to read as it is very up-to-date and published by an authoritative source backed by even more authoritative sources. The National Science and Technology Council has a subcommittee on Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence and they were the main authors of the whitepaper.

Artificial Intelligence as a Positive and Negative Factor in Global Risk by Intelligence.org

Written by Eliezer Yudkowsky, and sponsored by the Machine Intelligence Research Institute, this whitepaper looks at the many consequences that artificial intelligence can have in the future if it continues to grow as fast as it is. Because we don’t know where it’s headed, there’s no way to know whether those effects will be positive or negative, hence Yudkowsky looking at both.

Eliezer Yudkowsky works at the Machine Intelligence Research Institute as a full-time Research Fellow and lives in the San Francisco Bay, CA area.

Learning to Trust Artificial Intelligence Systems by IBM

In this whitepaper, it’s made aware that we’ve always had to come to terms with new or advancing technologies, and eventually we realize that these technologies better our lives in one form or another. It’s argued that artificial intelligence (or “augmented intelligence” as IBM likes to call it) will be the same way as it advances as well. We will learn to adjust to its ever-increasing presence in our lives and our lives will be enhanced by that presence.

This artificial intelligence white paper was written by Dr. Guruduth Banavar, who is the Chief Science Office of Cognitive Computing and the Vice President of IBM Research.

Artificial Intelligence and Life in 2030 by Stanford University

This is a report on a study of how artificial intelligence affects people, communities, and their society. This study looked back at the last one-hundred years and how things changed as far as technology as well as those effects. The study, published by Stanford, was released in September of 2016 and it’s important to note that the study also looked at the what challenges were raised for societies, such as the case with certain ethics or economic issues.

Extreme Automation and Connectivity: The Global, Regional, and Investment Implications of the Fourth Industrial Revolution by UBS for the World Economic Forum (WEF)

Published in January of 2016, if you are looking for artificial intelligence white papers, this is one you don’t want to miss. This “Fourth Industrial Revolution” being spawned by the interconnectedness caused by the global access to the internet in the palm of one’s hand now, and the automation of many parts of the production line, the only thing left to really set things into high gear and get this revolution going is artificial intelligence that can get at least somewhat close to mimicking the human mind.

Disruption Ahead by Deloitte

Deloitte is teaming up with IBM, who is the creator of Watson (the cognitive computer), to specifically devote resources to making this technology work for all types of businesses and individuals. In this whitepaper you will learn specifically how they are doing this and what they are expecting will be the outcome, as well as when they expect these milestones will occur. When reading this paper, you will learn a lot about how Watson works and how the machine can be implemented currently. There are case studies of current uses.

Artificial Intelligence, Robotics, Privacy and Data Protection by the European Union

Discussed at a meeting of the European Union in Marrakesh, this paper was published in October of 2016 and focuses on why it is so important to start discussing the data protection and privacy issues that are raised when artificial intelligence and robotics are a topic. Because these computers are supercomputers and can function beyond what we’ve seen before, and as advancements take them even further into supercomputer realm, we need to take a stand now as to how to protect data and the privacy of everyone on the planet.

The Robot and I: How New Digital Technologies Are now Making Smart People , Businesses Smarter by Automating Rote Work by Cognizant

When it comes to financials, most people go to the bank or login to their online banking and they say a few things or click a few buttons and what they need to do is done. But think about what needed to happen even 10 years ago for all that you just did to happen. Technology advancements, especially in the area of artificial intelligence, have taken away a lot of steps needed to get things done financially so it’s easier for individuals and businesses to work smarter. Well, we shouldn’t say it’s taken away those steps so much as done them for us.

Research Priorities for Robust and Beneficial Artificial Intelligence by Berkeley (University of California)

In this whitepaper, one of the best artificial intelligence white papers that you should read on the topic of AI research, several researchers consider what areas of research would be most beneficial to humankind and why. They give all their reasons, backed by sound science as well their experience and opinion, which is both trustworthy and notable.

Stuart Russell is a professor of computer science at the University of California, Berkley where he is also a Smith-Zadeh professor in engineering.

Daniel Dewey is a program manager for the Open Philanthropy Project.

Max Tegmark is a professor at MIT and a Swedish-American cosmologist.

The New Wave of Artificial Intelligence by Evry

This paper, by Evry, looks to educate readers as to why new AI companies are creating a new artificial intelligence revolution by making old AI outdated and creating a completely new future with the technology in many industries. It’s important to look at why, when creating a business with artificial intelligence, you need to start from the ground up even if the end result of the business is the same as the old one. The whole process is completely unique when you use a totally different technology.

It has been a pleasure to provide you with this list of top Artificial Intelligence books and whitepapers. If you enjoyed this article, retweet and comment please



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